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Pierre Wauthier Dies: Zurich Insurance Exec a Suicide, Say Police

Image: Pierre Wauthier Dies: Zurich Insurance Exec a Suicide, Say Police

By Newsmax Wires   |   Tuesday, 27 Aug 2013 01:42 PM

It appears that Zurich Insurance executive Pierre Wauthier committed suicide, said Swiss police after the firm's finance chief was found dead in his home on Monday.

"Based on the forensic institute's initial findings and evidence at his home, we can say the death of Pierre Wauthier is likely to be a suicide," Zug police spokesman Marcel Schlatter said in an emailed statement to Reuters.

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The police said they would not divulge further details out of respect for Wauthier's wife and two children.

A French-British citizen, the finance exec was a 17-year veteran of the Zurich Insurance. Wauthier served in various roles at the Swiss insurer, including as head of investor relations and finance chief at U.S. unit Farmers before becoming CFO in 2011.

His death comes only weeks after Swisscom chief executive Carsten Schloter was found dead at his home in what police said was an apparent suicide.

Wauthier's death rattled the insurance sector in Switzerland. A spokesman for Zurich, Europe's third-largest insurer by market capitalisation, declined to comment on whether Wauthier's death was in any way linked to the insurer's business.

Earlier this month, Zurich said it would be hard pressed to meet certain performance targets after posting a 27 percent fall in second-quarter net profit due to natural disaster payouts, which topped those of European rivals because of its high exposure to the United States.
Wauthier worked at the French foreign ministry and U.S. investment bank JPMorgan before joining Zurich in 1996.

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